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noun, plural: diaphoreses

A condition characterized by increased perspiration


Diaphoresis is when the body perspire greater than usual. Some literatures use the term diaphoresis to denote to conditions when the body sweats profusely. However, there are more stringent literatures that use the term to specifically describe conditions involving only the insensible type of perspiration, and then use the term sudoresis to pertain to that condition associated with the sensible type of perspiration.1

Diaphoresis may occur naturally (i.e. during strenuous physical activity, high ambient temperature, and high humidity). Perspiration is the body's natural defense against overheating by evaporation of sweat from the skin. An insensible perspiration, though, would occur but the body would not be aware of the water loss by evaporation. Diaphoresis may also occur pathologically such as those in fevers, hyperthyroidism, and shock. There are also pharmacological or chemical drugs and biological agents (e.g. certain herbs) that induce diaphoresis and they are referred to as diaphoretics.

Word origin: Latin diaphorēticus, from Greek diaphorētikós (promoting perspiration)


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1"A Text-Book Of Pharmacology, Therapeutics And Materia Medica | by T. Lauder Brunton." A Text-Book Of Pharmacology, Therapeutics And Materia Medica | by T. Lauder Brunton. N.p., n.d. Link.